Allen McPherson wrote:
I'm curious. Obviously, real-time TS2 frame generation is
very difficult, especially given the required data rates you
provided. On the other hand, would it be useful to use this
technology to preview shaders, different animation scenarios,
develop new shading algorithms, etc? [on lower resolution
models and image resolutions of course]
We certainly use 3D accelerators (SGI rather than NVIDIA) to preview animation. Until you can compile shading language programs to run on them, they won't be much use for shading and lighting.
Also, rather than one on every desk, what about one in each of
your 1000+ nodes of the render farm? We work in very different
domains, but we're looking at building just such a system (though
only on 32-64 nodes for now).
3D accelerators mostly don't do anyting we're interested in doing a lot of. Of the 1.2 million hours of CPU time that goes into making a set of TS2 frames, about 1.1 million hours is devoted to executing shading language code, for which NVIDIA's cards are essentially no help at all. If they could cache texture off a several-gigabyte UNIX filesystem and pull filtered texture samples at arbitrary coordinates out at the rates they advertise, they might be some use, since I think about half of the time we spend in shading is devoted to sampling texture maps. But note that by Ahmdahl's
law, if their boards were infinitely fast, we'd stilly only see a 50% rendering speed-up.
Tom Duff. Some sort of background check is in order.
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